As part of a larger project challenging and moving beyond the premodern and modern paradigms, this article focuses on the modern paradigm and its notion of secularization. Section II will discuss the origin of the modern paradigm as a reaction to the religious pluralism and the religious wars in the sixteenth and seventeenth century such as the Thirty Years War in Europe (1618-48) and the English Civil War (1642-51) resulting from the Protestant Reformation. The Reformation divided the Western part of the Christian tradition into separate confessional institutions based on different theological interpretations of Christianity such as Lutheran, Calvinist, and Anabaptist. The Lutheran, Calvinist, and Anabaptist understandings of the relationship of the church and the state were substantially different from the Roman Catholic understanding. Under the pre-modern paradigm, only one of these understandings of the Christian tradition could legitimate the state. This produced conflict and eventually war among these confessional institutions for control of the state. Faced with religious conflict and devastating religious wars, the modern paradigm attempted to replace the religious legitimation under the pre-modern paradigm with a secular legitimation of law based on the Enlightenment view of reason. The secular legitimation of law under the modern paradigm attempted to separate law and religion into autonomous spheres so that a plurality of religious traditions could coexist within a state.
27 Miss. C. L. Rev. 159 (2007).